Me carrying luggage on the Kumta station.
In my unschooling life, me, mamma, and papa believe that every moment can be an opportunity to learn something new. Trips, of-course, are chalk-full of learning. All that traveling to and fro – by train or bus or flight, seeing so many people and places. If it’s a train journey, nothing else can beat the experience.
That was exactly how it turned out, recently, when we went to Sagara – my grandparents’ place. It was a week-long stay and full of fun and learning. There were many such moments. I’m sharing with you some of those that are top of my list.
1. Being a traveler on the Konkan Railway Route
To go to Sagara, we have to take the Konkan railway route – upto Kumta. The Konkan route passes through the lush greenery of the Western Ghats. I’d never before been through this railway route. Earlier whenever we went to my grandparents’s place, we went from Delhi and took a flight upto Bangalore and then the overnight train – which is not the Konkan route.
So, talking about the Konkan railways route – it’s breath-taking beautiful.
As I sat by the window seat seeing the endless greenery – the paddy fields, the streams, the rivers, the lakes, everything was just so peaceful.
Our journey to Kumta in the train was amazing.
The girl in the blue T shirt is me, and Sufiana is in the orange spotty dress, there’s my mom in the blue T shirt, and my Bua(black T shirt) my grandma, (maroon and pink sari) and my cousin sister- Asmita (orange frock).
1. Sitting Together
My love for cooking got a boost in Sagara. There i joined my grandmother in making some sweets. She had made a ‘gujhiya (momos) type sweet that’s stuffed with coconut and Bella/gur (jaggery). It’s good to learn a new recipe from your grandma, but more than enjoying the stuffing into the dough, i enjoyed sitting in the circle with all my family members doing it together. Sufiana was the youngest in the circle, and my grandma was the oldest!
2. My Passion for Cooking Gets a Real Test: The first time ever in my life I made so many rotis (Indian breads)
Okay, brace yourselves up to read this: I made 25 rotis myself for the first time ever in my life. There were 10-12 family members for dinner that evening. There was going to be rice and sambhar, too. So, we decided that two rotis per person would be required. And, I offered to make all the rotis. My mom, my grandmother – they resisted a bit. They said, they’ll make some and I can make a few. But, I wanted to make all the rotis. And, once I started, there was no stopping. I ended up making 25 rotis. It was definitely a tough job, though my mom helped me in roasting the rotis. However, rolling the rotis is the main part and i did all of that myself! And hey, I made them quite fast, too. That’s what everyone was saying. My grandma was totally surprised. She just couldn’t believe her eyes!
3. Learning a New Language by talking
My cousin sister, Asmita, is just 4 years old. She knows a little bit of Hindi or English and feels more comfortable conversing in her mother tongue – Kannada. So, I talked a lot with her in Kannada though I am not at all fluent in this language. First couple of days, I was shy and hesitant. But then, I would ask my father whenever I could not find the right word to use. Slowly, I gained confidence and I got over my shyness too. Asmita, too, was learning to speak in Hindi with me. She was also getting over her shyness and reluctance. We both were catching up fast – she with her Hindi and I, with my Kannada. Our family members were just so pleased and surprised to see us interact with ease, in spite of the language barrier.
5. The Weekly Vegetable Market
It was the biggest vegetable market i’ve ever seen. So many colours, sizes, shapes. And, such humungous heaps of tomotaoes, potatoes, beans and onions and greens! There were spices too. And, incense sticks. And, rangoli powder in such bright colours. I was overjoyed at these sights, for i could take so many pictures. And, I did take. Mamma too. It was crowded and dusty, but worth the visit. Here are some clicks from the photo-walk to the vegetable market.